Personal Development for Smart People – Review
Steve Pavlina has been a big influence in my life ever since I discovered his blog a bit over a year ago. At that time, he opened a lot of doors for me leading to my discovery of the wonderful blogging community I’m now a part of.
With that in mind, I have to say I was pretty excited when I learned earlier this year that Steve would be publishing his first book, one that promised to go beyond specific and narrow topics and right to the heart of what growth means for a human being, through the 7 fundamental principles he named truth, love, power, oneness, authority, courage and intelligence.
Has he achieved this highly ambitious goal? I can’t answer that for everyone; all I can do is to share my own impressions and let you draw your own conclusions.
I’m quite familiar with Steve’s writings, so I felt right at home when I started reading his book. It’s always refreshing to see someone capturing highly abstract concepts and expressing them in a down-to-earth, practical manner. The main thesis explained in the book is that overcoming every single challenge you face in life can be reduced to the application of 3 fundamental principles: Truth, Love and Power, from which all other are derived.
As I read through these chapters, what he wrote somehow felt right. It’s as if he had tapped into some universal, deep wisdom to extract these concepts. This is nothing new, as Jeff notes in his review, but the absolutely practical way in which these ideas are expressed make them easily applicable to daily life. This is Steve’s biggest accomplishment by far, although in his usual manner he heavily infused the text with current american culture, going a bit contrary to his stated goal of writing something universal and timeless, but that’s just a small caveat.
I must say I was very fascinated by the first half of the book, where the 7 principles are explained. I found them so obvious and elegant that I immediately added them to my intuitive vocabulary, and started to rethink my life in these terms. This happened even before reading the second half of the book, which explains precisely how to do that and which, in a sense, was more of a series of how-to guides than core content.
Here are the 3 main principles in short, in my own words:
Thruth is the capacity to learn, to see beyond the obvious and to face even the most uncomfortable facts.
Love is the feeling of connectedness and respect towards everything present in life.
Power is the means through which ideas becomes reality.
In conclusion, I would say this was definitely a read providing me with value orders of magnitude higher than my time investment. If this post has piqued your curiosity, the book can be found here at Amazon.